Wednesday, 17 April 2013

A week of deaths

The Capital Times (1974-2013)

The much-loved Wellington freebie weekly, the Capital Times, published its final edition last week, becoming the latest casualty of a changing media landscape and a flat local economy.

It filled in for the much missed City Voice after its editor moved back to Auckland, and covered a range of local issues that were largely glossed over by the mainstream dailies. Grant Buist's Jitterati cartoons never ceased to entertain, and he hopes to continue the series online.

The Capital Times didn't get more Wellington than this, and it's going to leave big shoes to fill.

Margaret Thatcher (1925-2013)

The Iron Lady was never for turning, but the ageing process was one enemy she could never fight. To her supporters, Thatcher rescued Britain from irrelevance and industrial paralysis, and reforged it as a financial superpower. To her detractors, Thatcher destroyed British industry and the livelihoods of millions. In any case, she remains a polarising figure in Britain and abroad, even in death, and the various rituals celebrating her death illustrate that. Thatcher seemed unstoppable - until she implemented the infamous Poll Tax, which provoked riots all over Britain, and a leadership challenge which she risked losing until she jumped.

The Boston Bombings

A series of explosions struck the famed Boston Marathon just after the finish line was crossed, shaking Americans' sense of security once again in the wake of Aurora and Sandy Hook.

So far, no one has claimed responsibility, but initial analyses by terrorism experts lean toward the theory of a domestic or lone wolf attack, given the amateurish engineering of the bombs, and that the explosions happened on Patriots' Day and almost coincided with the anniversaries of the Waco Siege and the Oklahoma City bombing. That hasn't stopped the usual suspects from jumping to conclusions: Alex Jones thinks it's an FBI false flag plot, Alan Jones blames 'left-wing radical students', and Pamela Geller and Robert Spencer blame the Muslims. Plus ça change, plus ca même chose.

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